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[Balmung] Interest Check: HeavyRP FC with Art/Creativity Incentives

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Recently I have started to work on a concept for a future FC and/or linkshell. I wanted to see if there was any interest in it, and if people would find it new, fun, and conductive for creativity. At the moment I'm leaning towards starting with the linkshell/skype/forum way of managing our creative ventures, so no one feels like they have to leave their current FCs. The application on the enjin will still apply for becoming a member.


It's called Aetherwing Express.


This FC will be designed with artists, creative writers, and heavy roleplayers in mind. I want to see how many of us here are looking for something like this. Especially if you like drawing, please consider it!


In order to reward RP, art, and writing, the FC has an IC incentives system that is detailed on the work-in-progress enjin forums. 


http://aetherwing.enjin.com/home All information about what I wish for this FC/Linkshell to be is listed here on the front page news post. Specific information can be found here. http://aetherwing.enjin.com/forum/m/34889797/viewforum/6463466


In brief, my FC will hope to have the following:




  • Seasonal Events. Every 3 months, AWE will host a “Seasonal Event”. These are two to three week long plot events that use a roll system.
  • Weekly Social RP Events. Every week there will be a new RP scenario to participate in. From tavern talks, mini-plots, investigations, to combat, you never know what you’re going to get during our weekly gatherings.
  • An active Skype group. Throughout the day, you can contact anyone in our public Skype group, chat, confer about RP, and more!
  • Art. AWE encourages our members to partake in visual art, even if you don’t think you’re good at it. The founder of AWE is extremely interested in creating art and comics of other members’ characters, and the same is encouraged for others. When a new person joins the FC, they will get their character added to the illustration on our website header!
  • Creative Writing. There will be creative writing and one-shot prompts for members to participate in that will help developing characters and general participation in the ongoing stories. For example, there will be short-story contests about a situation in your character’s life. There will also be lighthearted contests for crackfics about other people’s characters. (Don’t know what a cracfic is? You will. Hahahahahaha!)
  • RP Currency System. AWE implements a system of its own currency within the FC that members can use to purchase in-character benefits. Our RP currency is awarded to anyone who participates in an event, creates a drawing, writes a character journal, roleplays on the forum, or partakes in any creative, RP-based activity. This is to encourage creativity and participation. Examples of rewards are below. The special FC currency can be redeemed for things such as these. They will all come hand-crafted for your character, with an accompanying plot, or mysterious, unexpected twist.
    • An expensive ring. Weeks later, as you’re shopping in Ul’dah, a man gasps, and claims the ring belonged to his dead wife!
    • A mysterious egg. Who knows what manner of beast will hatch!
    • A hand-crafted weapon or armor, designed specifically to fit your character’s personality!
    • An illustration of your character. Commission IC, get a drawing both IC and OOC!
    • And many more!


If this sounds like something you'd like, please let me know here, or go ahead and fill out an application on the site. The FC does not yet exist, but the linkshell does. I need to know if I can actually find some folks who mesh with my ideas that would like to give signatures and become part of the foundation of its future.

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For now there is an application to get into the forum, linkshell and skype group. There aren't currently any art contests, a custom banner, or the other things I mentioned because the group is still so small, but if I get enough people interested to join the linkshell and participate in RP and art, I will start hosting events, contests, and art things.




The app is still a work in progress, so I'm not going to be very strict with it. Just filling it out is enough and I'll ask questions/clarifications if need be.

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I'm interested in this, and I'm also FC-less at the moment, but what I want to know more about the group's IC concept. What's present on the site seems a little vague, and I understand that this is intentional, but it unfortunately doesn't make for a very convincing sales-pitch, at least to me.


I'm also somewhat wary of the transaction system; it seems that those that don't have much time to do anything other than live life and play the game might find themselves at a bit of a loss as far as certain kinds of participation within the group goes. I might have a bit of a bias in this area, however, as I've always been rather wary of currency-transactions within RP groups.


Additionally, I would also like to know how plots are supposed to work. Many groups that I've been in in the past seemed to have a problem with, or were otherwise inflexible regarding, story-heavy events run by people that aren't officers or people that have some sway over the direction of the guild story. As someone who likes to run events of all sorts, this was particularly stifling to me. How is this going to be handled within the context of this FC?

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@Arcian : Alting is perfectly fine. I don't mind how people want to participate or on which characters, so long as they find something fun within the community to participate in and contribute to.


@Oli: These are the sorts of questions I was hoping to receive, and thank you for taking the time to type them out. The reason why I posted here on the RPC was for an interest check, after all. Though I have a lot of strong ideas for the direction I want this community to go in, I am also posting here to gather opinions from people, so that those who are interested in the community can help me build it and shape it into the sort of place they'd want to be a part of.


1) Aye, the vague pitch is mostly due to the fact that I am still gathering interest. The biggest difference from this FC and most others is the currency system, which is most important for me to develop in a balanced, interesting, and fair way before I figure out all the details about the FC/linkshell setting and company itself. I will be ironing out all the details within the next couple of days.


2) The transaction system is meant to reward all forms of participation, both in-game and out-of-game. It's designed to actually give people an incentive to do anything- a tangible reward for being actively involved in the creative hobby of roleplaying, storytelling, and art. For, those three things are part of what makes the game fun for some people, myself included.


So, let's say you don't have a lot of time to devote outside of your busy life. If you don't want to log in or RP or anything, you can still earn Feathers (the AWE currency) by posting a quick journal on the forums, or doodling a picture of your character or someone else's character. (I'm thinking of awarding more Feathers for when people draw someone else's character, or making a little comic or RP scene illustration.) The idea is to make a place that no one will forget - a guild which has people actively writing, drawing, and participating in other people's stories.


I've been in a lot of guilds in my time, and I've run a couple, too. One thing I've been noticing lately is a general atmosphere in many RP communities where people are spending more time waiting, hoping, and wondering if someone will participate in their story, rather than going out there, working, and cultivating an experience. So the idea is, you get what you give. 


The actual rewards that Feathers can give you will never come with IC or OOC power, too, because I want everyone to feel like equals in this community. The rewards will have unique items that will have a plot-hook or be written and designed inspired by the character who bought them. So, for participating and roleplaying and creating stories, you'd be rewarded with more ammunition to create more stories. And it's all designed for your character, so there's the element of surprise, too, in not knowing what you're going to receive.


That's my way of thinking for the currency system, anyway. Do you think you would find any flaws in this, or do you have any bad experiences from RP guilds who've attempted similar currency systems in the past?


3) My idea for this FC and/or LS community is that everyone is encouraged to run plot events at any time. The developing guild story will be formed by everyone. 


I ran a few plot events for my previous guilds that I've done over the years, and the way I do it is that I design a script with branching paths, so that the community decisions can affect the outcome of the story. Then, other people are free to add on to that story.


One event I ran involved a young, up-and-coming crime lord who bribed children off the street and trained them to be thieves. The company ended up catching the crime lord and some of the children decided to stay with the company because they had no family. Those children became NPCs free for use in other plots.


I think, so long as people are active about communicating the kind of events they want to run with existing plot material that has been established in the community so they don't end up running over each other, it should turn out fine. New plot material is of course always open to be established by members for their own events. 



I really want this community to be flexible, open, and fun. I don't want to do anything that people would consider creativity-stifling. I'm trying to do just the opposite. :P



Let me know if this doesn't sufficiently address your concerns, or if you have any suggestions.

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The main problem that I have with currency systems is that some people only end up investing in the time to gain a little bit of said currency, others invest a moderate amount of time and get a moderate return, and some people invest a lot of time, and get a large return.


And then there are people that invest so much more time and get so much more back than anyone else, that they become a major player that dwarfs all other characters. I mean the people that acquire so many things that they end up having The Most Powerful Sword, a ring that smites demons, a hundred Trinkets of Magical Power, and some Plot-Handwaves on the side, or something like that. Even if everyone in the group ends up on this level, if someone new joins, they'll be vastly beneath these other people.


I understand that as far as things go in the context of this particular group, things will be traded for Plot Happenings, as opposed to actual character power. The question then becomes this: A new person, or someone with vastly less feather-power than everyone else wants in on some of these interactions and plot-hooks in order to encourage interaction or interest in their character, but unlike everyone else who is throwing feathers around to get all the interactions they want, this person only has so much; how are they going to get all the interactions and hooks that they want to have, and that the FC provides, without having to put in "work" which might eventually become rather tedious, such as making art for everyone, or posting tons of character journals? As much as people love doing these things, myself included, as soon as it starts to feel like something that you're just doing in order to get to an end result, people could start to lose interest rather quickly. There's also the question of what people are allowed to do with their character both with and without the need for feathers. Are there any particular additions to a character that someone cannot make without requiring a feather? If not, then what purpose does the feather system serve? If so, then how would people react to having their characters limited in such a way, and / or what sorts of confusion would arise from that?


Either way, if you're looking for people to help set this up and brainstorm plot directions and group concepts with, I would be more than happy to be one of those people.

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Thank you for posting your concerns and for your thoughtful response.


There will be no character-power giving items as rewards, and never will be. I don't like the idea of The Guy Who's Been Here Longest getting All The Best Stuff. My present ideas for the currency rewards are simply little plot-hooks designed by me (or any future administrator on the off chance this idea actually gets big or if I need more than 1 head working on the plot-hook item stuff.) It'd be something along the lines of, you exchange your Black Feathers for an expensive ring. You wear the ring around Ul'dah, and a man claims the ring belonged to his deceased wife. Suddenly, you have a little plot that you weren't expecting to have! But the plot can be resolved at its own time, and after that, you just have a cool ring and a neat story to remember it by. 


Otherwise I don't plan on restricting ANYTHING. People can create their own plots however they wish or bring in plots from other communities- I really don't care. The idea behind the currency is solely to provide something unexpected that me and/or a future admin would create specifically for that individual. I would, hypothetically, roleplay with them and read about their character enough to know the sort of things that character would have a "fun time" dealing with. Does the character have a fear of Garleans? Maybe his plot-hook item would come with a story involving him having to deal with a Garlean (either on friendly or not-so-friendly terms.) 


Your concerns about members who don't want to invest as much time getting feathers as other members- well, I see it like this. If they think doing art or stories is tedious, why would they want to join us in the first place?  BUt I agree, there is a fine balance to making these plot-hook items easy enough to obtain without working too hard, and not so easy to obtain that I'm spitting out plot ideas all the time to the point where I'd end up coming up with bad ideas because I'm draining my creative resources. 


The idea is that the currency system isn't going to be the "main feature", rather, a little bit of spice to already-existing storylines that the characters bring to the table, or are generated by our events. 


I'd love some help setting things up, though I'd love to talk to you a bit more to figure out what kind of experience you have and if you and I are on the same page with this sort of thing. Do you have a skype I could reach you at?

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We've received a handful of applications, which is awesome. We're still looking for more- but I believe pretty soon I'll start setting up events and the like!


@Seda'li: Snagged you in-game! Thanks for the interest.


@Gwendolyn: That sounds awesome to me! Let me know if you'd like to check it out. The application's up and running on the site, aetherwing.enjin.com.

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